It's actually quite common for doctors to write "off label" prescriptions, including using cancer drugs to treat migraine headaches or blood pressure medication for heart failure.
One study found that 1 in 5 prescriptions written in doctor's offices has not been approved by the Food and Drug Administration to treat the condition it is being used for. And while some off-label drugs are used with no problems, others may not work or may increase a patient's risk of complications.
Plenty of collectors want to donate artworks to museums, but the museums don't always welcome them with open arms. "We say 'no thanks' 19 times out of 20," says Betsy Broun, director at the American Art Museum. Sometimes the works aren't museum-quality, other times they don't fit with the museums' philosophy.
Harry Potter and The Hunger Games haven't been big hits for nothing. Lots of teens and adolescents still read quite a lot.
But a roundup of studies, put together by the nonprofit Common Sense Media, shows a clear decline over time. Nearly half of 17-year-olds say they read for pleasure no more than one or two times a year — if that.
Glenn Greenwald, the Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist who helped to break stories about mass surveillance in the United States, is making more revelations in a new book coming out Tuesday.
In an interview with NPR's Morning Edition, Greenwald says one of the more "shocking" things he's found is that the National Security Agency physically intercepted shipments of computer hardware, like routers, switches and servers, to outfit them with surveillance equipment.
The federal government has spent billions helping veterans get the training and education they need to re-enter the civilian workforce.
Despite the effort, the unemployment rate for vets remains higher than the national average. Aside from dealing with the psychological transition, veterans also have to navigate how to transfer their military skills into civilian ones.
To combat welfare and food stamp fraud, states across the nation are considering various steps, including requiring photos on Electronic Benefit Transfer cards. Massachusetts and New York are the only states with photo ID programs right now, but they'll soon be joined by Maine, whose Republican governor is using his executive authority to avoid a political battle and start a similar program.
A pair of former heavy metal guitarists who left Mexico for Ireland, Rodrigo y Gabriela developed an acoustic sound that has taken the duo from playing on the streets for change to some of the biggest stages on the festival circuit. Rodrigo Sanchez and Gabriela Quintero joined NPR's Arun Rath in the studio at NPR West to perform a few selections from their latest album, 9 Dead Alive. Hear the music, and their conversation, at the audio link.
I bought my first and only pregnancy test when I was 26.
At the time, I had been doing a lot of meth. I was fortunate if I remembered to eat one meal a day. Refilling my birth-control prescription had become just another missed detail in a life that had ceased to have much meaning for me.
I was an addict, and I was staring at two very bright pink lines on a stick.
I showed the test to my boyfriend. "What are we going to do?" I asked. He replied, "Have a baby, I guess."
There are a few special days we relish watching unfold on social media. The first day of school is one. Mother's Day is another. We like them because social feeds are filled with photographs that gives us an intimate peek at a very special human connection that resonates across the globe.
On this mother's day, we looked sifted through Instagram and Twitter and pulled out some of our favorite images. Here they are, but before all of that: Happy Mother's Day!
When you think of China, what pops to mind? Superhighways. Bullet trains. Gleaming skyscrapers. Economic growth. A booming middle class. Opportunity.
My friends and I graduated from college five years ago, embarking on lives that we hoped would be full of promise, excitement and opportunity. We all went to Minzu University of China (formerly known as the Central University for Nationalities), a prestigious school in Beijing.
Monday is the final day of voting in India's election, the biggest democratic exercise in the world.
India is home to more than 1 billion people, 13 percent of them Muslims. Their mistrust of Narendra Modi, the Hindu nationalist leader running for prime minister, can tell us a great deal about India, a democratic country with a long history of religious violence between the Muslim minority and the Hindu majority.
For some, it was parents or grandparents. For others, it was school elections, field trips to Washington, D.C. or programs like Girls State. Those were the answers we got recently when we asked NPR listeners to share photos and to tell us: who or what got you interested or involved in politics?
We got dozens of responses, and these are some of our favorites, complete with '80s hair and antique campaign buttons.
Louis C.K. has made a career in comedy by going places others won't. He can be shockingly crude and deeply insightful in the same sentence.
In his Emmy-award winning TV show called Louie, the comedian basically plays himself — a divorced standup comic in New York with two kids. Season 4 of the show kicked off last week.
Louie is "right where I started him, really," he tells NPR's Rachel Martin. "Some stuff happened, but he ended up back where he was, which sort of is the way things work. It's a zero-sum game, at times."
The new film "The Double" is a comedy and a love story, but a very dark one. It's based off an 1846 Dostoyevsky novella. "The Double" focuses on a guy named Simon James. He is, by all accounts, rather nondescript - the kind of guy who fades, mostly intentionally, into the background. He stammers halfway through sentences, his boss can't remember his name and he can't seem to make any impression on the girl of his dreams. Then one day at work, things get worse when Simon James' boss makes an announcement.
There's a town in Russia on the far eastern reaches of the country closer to Alaska than any major Russian city. It's terribly cold, and snow falls late into spring. That place is Magadan, and it's the focal point of a new collection of short stories by Kseniya Melnik. It's called "Snow In May."
In film, there are all kinds of characters - the hero, the villain, the seductress, the mentor, the damned and the redeemed. And sometimes, all of those are wrapped into one complex role called the mother.
Take a look at many of the great movies in history, and a lot of times, you'll find a maternal figure at the emotional center of the story. Here's Sally Field in "Forrest Gump."
This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Rachel Martin. The Vatican got a grilling this past week for its handling of the clerical sex abuse scandal. The setting - a United Nations hearing in Geneva. Meanwhile in Rome, a new advisory board to Pope Francis held its first meeting on the sex abuse crisis.
This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Rachel Martin. Separatists in eastern Ukraine are holding a hastily arranged referendum today on self-rule for the region. The international community has called the vote illegitimate, but it is going ahead nonetheless.
The vote comes several weeks after Russia annexed Crimea after a similar vote. NPR's Soraya Sarhaddi Nelson is at a polling station in Donetsk. And NPR's Corey Flintoff is in Luhansk They join me now to talk about the vote. Soraya, what are you seeing where you are?
This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Rachel Martin. The presidential campaign in Egypt has kicked off for this month's election. Last night, a few thousand people gathered in Cairo to show their support for Egypt's ex-military chief, Abdel Fattah al-Sisi.
(SOUNDBITE OF RALLY)
MARTIN: Sisi is one of only two candidates in the running. Analysts say he will be the country's next president, and they ask if this election is a step toward democracy or a path back to authoritarian rule.
One recent morning, a mile-long line of cars waited to cross the international border separating Spain from Britain's Rock of Gibraltar. Spanish border guards were stopping every car, resulting in long lines that could take up to six hours to cross.
Spain said it was checking for tobacco smuggling across the international border. But these increased checks were Spain's retaliation in a spat over fishing rights and access to nearby waters, said Brian Reyes, news editor at the local newspaper, the Gibraltar Chronicle.
So that's the picture in academic science, but we wanted to get a sense of whether the issues are similar in the science industries away from academia. To talk about that, we called on one of the highest-ranking women in the nuclear field. Her name is Maria Korsnick. She works for Exelon Nuclear, one of the largest power-generating companies in the U.S. She was the first woman in this country to hold the title of chief nuclear officer. I started by asking her to just explain what that title means.